Robert earned his M.A. in Public History at Loyola University of Chicago in 1991. He is a past president of the Civil War Round Table of Chicago, a member of the Company of Military Historians and is an associate member of the Sons of Union Veterans. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Illinois State Historical Society and has been on the editorial review board of the Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society since 2009. He has consulted for the Chicago Historical Society and the Bureau County Historical Society. In 2013 he joined the Board of Directors for the Camp Douglas Restoration Foundation. He was the keynote speaker at the rededication of the Illinois Monument in the National Cemetery at Andersonville and was awarded a research grant by the Friends of Andersonville. He was the 2010 recipient of the Chicago CWRT’s Nevins-Freeman Award for service and scholarship. In 2014 he was awarded the Iron Brigade Association Award for Civil War Scholarship by the Milwaukee CWRT.
Robert has a lifelong interest in the Civil War and has studied all facets of the conflict.
He speaks to groups of all ages and levels of expertise on multiple aspects of the Civil War, especially the experience of the common soldier, and the role of Illinois in the war.
He has written numerous essays and book reviews and was the guest editor for the 2011- 2014 Sesquicentennial of the Civil War issues of the Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society. His most recent essay appeared in the North & South Magazine.
He has recently retired after 31 years from the Chicago Police Department, 25 of which he spent in homicide.
Robert I. Girardi has authored or edited ten books:
The Soldiers’ General: Major General Gouverneur K. Warren and the Civil War (pending)
The Civil War Generals: Comrades, Peers, Rivals, in Their Own Words (2013)
The Civil War Art of Keith Rocco (2009)
Campaigning with Uncle Billy: The Civil War Memoirs of Sgt. Lyman S. Widney, 34th
The Soldier’s View: The Civil War Art of Keith Rocco (2004)
The New Annals of the Civil War (2004)
The Memoirs of Brigadier General William Passmore Carlin, U.S.A. (1999)
The Military Memoirs of General John Pope (1998)
Captain H.W. Chester: Recollections of the War of the Rebellion (1996)